Islamic Jihad Agrees to Gaza Ceasefire Agreement
The Palestinian group, Islamic Jihad, has reached an immediate ceasefire agreement with Israel on Sunday.
The Islamic Jihad movement has been firing rockets and mortars into Israel for the past several days during a surge in the violence.
Abu Ahmad, a military spokesman for the Islamic Jihad movement emailed a statement to reporters stating that Islamic Jihad "will cooperate with the cease-fire, but maintains our right to resist the aggression.”
The Egyptian brokered deal comes after the deadliest fighting in recent weeks between both sides.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that airstrikes targeting a “terror tunnel” and three suspected rocket launching sites took place late Sunday.
Netanyahu stated that he does not “want the situation to deteriorate, but we will defend ourselves.” The message was sent to reporters via a text message.
U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon condemned the violence and stated that he “hopes that both parties will fully respect the calm as brokered by Egypt," and also "urges maximum Israeli restraint following the killing of a reported 10 alleged militants."
The eruption of violence came less than three weeks after Israel let hundreds of Palestinian prisoners free during a prisoner exchange for Gilad Shalit, an Israeli soldier that had been held captive for more than five years.
The latest set of causalities from this weekend occurred when Israeli aircraft struck a terrorist training base killing five militants. The subsequent retaliatory strikes sent more than 20 mortars into southern Israel, according to the Gaza emergency medical head Abu Selmaya.
The Israeli army said it holds Hamas, which controls the Gaza strip, responsible for attacks that originate from the area.
In a statement that was published by the Palestinian Wafa news agency, Nabeel Abu Rudeina, a spokesman for Abbas, urged that an escalation of violence be avoided at all costs. He urged Hamas “not to give Israel an opportunity to exploit the situation and relaunch a war on Gaza.”